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Canadian oil firm keeps value promise: pulls out of national park in Peru's Amazon, avoiding damage to cultures and surroundings

(quote)

Saturday 22 April 2017

"[W]e wish to reiterate the company’s commitment to conduct its operations under the highest sustainability and human rights guidelines, avoiding damages to cultures and their surroundings; a value promise we feel remains intact."

Canadian oil firm pulls out of national park in Peru's Amazon Pacific abandons one million hectare concession including indigenous peoples’ territories along Brazil border.

A Canadian-headquartered company, Pacific Exploration and Production, has pulled out of a huge oil and gas concession overlapping a new national park in the Peruvian Amazon. The concession, Lot 135, includes approximately 40% of the Sierra del Divisor national park established in 2015.

The concession has provoked opposition in Peru and just across the border in Brazil for many years, including regular statements since 2009 from indigenous Matsés people in both countries and a lawsuit recently filed by regional indigenous federation ORPIO. Both Lot 135 and the park overlap territory used by the Matsés and a proposed reserve for indigenous people living in “isolation.”

Pacific signed a contract for the concession in 2007, the year after a significant chunk of it had been declared a supposedly “protected natural area” but eight years before it became a national park.

The company’s decision to pull out was made public by UK-headquartered NGO Survival International. Institutional Relations and Sustainability Manager Alejandro Jimenez Ramirez told Survival in a letter dated 13 March 2017:  read more »

No one behind the wheel. Tesla 'autopilot' car hits Phoenix police motorcycle; Apple to test self-driving cars

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Official: Tesla 'autopilot' car hits Phoenix police motorcycle
A Phoenix police motorcycle was struck by a Tesla Model X reportedly operating on autopilot last week, police said.

The incident came days before a crash in Tempe involving an automated Uber vehicle in Tempe.
The collision prompted Uber to temporarily ground the program as it investigated the incident, but a company representative said Monday that the fleet will be redeployed.

In the southwestern dusk, an accident involving one of Uber’s autonomous Volvo XC90 test fleet cars happened

The iPhone of cars? Apple enters self-driving car race
Ending years of speculation, Apple's late entry into a crowded field was made official Friday with the disclosure that the California Department of Motor Vehicles had awarded a permit for the company to start testing its self-driving car technology on public roads in the state.

Apple will be vying against 29 other companies that already have California permits to test self-driving cars. The list includes major automakers, including Ford, General Motors, BMW, Volkswagen and Tesla, as well as one of its biggest rivals in technology, Google, whose testing of self-driving cars has been spun off into an affiliate called Waymo.

(unquote)  read more »

Prince William, Prince Harry and Justin Trudeau in Northern France to mark centenary of pivotal WWi battle, paying tribute

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They came together in northern France yesterday to mark the centenary of a pivotal First World War battle
On Sunday afternoon, the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry joined Justin Trudeau in paying tribute to the 3,600 Canadian soldiers killed at the historic battle.

And images of the dashing royals standing with the Canadian Prime Minister clearly proved too much for some to handle with the French press dubbing them 'le trio sexy' while one Twitter user declared: 'You can't have that much handsome in one place'.

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Image courtesy AFP / Getty Images

Driver texting while driving, crossed center line, killed 13 on church bus. Spike in pedestrian deaths: cell phone distractions

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Witness Saw Truck Driver Texting Befоre Texas Crash That Killed 13
A witness to a deadly Texas wreck involving a church minibus says the driver of a pickup truck that crossed the center line repeatedly apologized and acknowledged he had been texting while driving.

Jody Kuchler told The Associated Press on Friday that he was driving behind the truck and had seen it being driven erratically prior to the collision on a rural two-lane road about 75 west of San Antonio.

Kuchler says he spoke with the driver as he was pinned in his truck Wednesday moments after the collision with the bus carrying senior adults with First Baptist Church of New Braunfels, Texas.

Kuchler says he told the driver, "Son, do you know what you just did?" He says the driver responded by repeatedly apologizing. The Texas Department of Public Safety has identified the driver as 20-year-old Jack Dillon Young.

Thirteen people on the bus were killed and the lone survivor remained hospitalized Friday.

Spike in US Pedestrian Deaths Linked to Cell Phone Distractions
The Governors Highway Safety Association reported nearly 6,000 pedestrian deaths for 2016, the highest figure in more than 20 years.

(unquote)

Image courtesy newscame.com

Netherlands and France train eagles to catch drones. UK: Prince William's air ambulance narrowly escapes from lethal drone


Partnering with Nature is a time-honored tradition, Dutch police training golden eagles to catch drones



Prince Williams has flown for the Air Ambulance Service since 2015; a lethal drone comes within HALF A SECOND of Prince William's air ambulance.


A golden eagle grabs a flying drone during a military training exercise at Mont-de-Marsan French Air Force base, Southwestern France.

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February 8, 2016  read more »

Again and Again. Volunteers risk own lives standing between ocean mammals and Japanese whaling fleet

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09 March 2017
Once again, our ships are all that stands between the whales and the Japanese whaling fleet.
Whale rescue ships at sea for 93 days (Ocean Warrior) and 90 days (the Steve Irwin)
Keeping Japanese whale butcher fleet (in the name of "research") on the move - whenever we got near the harpoon vessels or found discarded whale blubber in the sea that indicated we were close to where recent kills occurred (and therefore near the fleet), the factory ship simply took off full speed in the opposite direction. The Steve Irwin was shadowed by the Yushin Maru 3, thus taking one of the harpoon vessels out of action for 36 days. This year has taught us that we need to do more if we’re going to stop the whale poachers next season. We are a grassroots NGO fighting a war against the Japanese-government funded whaling fleet.

We rely on donations and volunteers, while they spend millions to sustain this slaughter for the non-existent demand for whale meat over a decade.

Antarctic waters, Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary -
On December 3rd Sea Shepherd embarked on its 11th Antarctic whale defense campaign.
Once again, our ships are all that stands between the whales and the Japanese whaling fleet. Ocean mammals need help to be defended.

(unquote)

Photo courtesy Sea Shepherd Global / Simon Ager , Glenn Lockitch

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